Fire Starters

Boldness, clarity and wisdom for fundraising professionals

How to Effectively Use Storytelling in Nonprofit Marketing

It’s no secret I have a passion for using storytelling to raise awareness and fundraising dollars for nonprofit organizations.
When my Twitter colleague @DennisFishman asked me: How would you adapt Pam Neely’s storytelling advice for nonprofit use? I jumped at the chance to take her post [5 Simple Ways to Use Storytelling in your Marketing] and provide a nonprofit lens.

True Story: I Took Out A City With My Words One Day

Do you ever worry about how to best say what you’re thinking? Especially to your donors?
A number of years ago, Sarah, my friend and coworker pulled me aside after a meeting to ask, “Did you mean to take out the entire city in that meeting?”
I gave her a blank look until she repeated back a few of my comments—what I meant to be honest and helpful sounded, well, pushy and like I was criticizing.
In raising money, engaging board members, building relationships, and frankly in just about any area of your life, communication is the key to success.

7 Key Questions to Answer Before You Ask for A Major Gift

It might sound too simplistic, but it’s true. When asking for a major gift for your nonprofit: Only ask the people you know want to say yes.

By making this your practice you’ll naturally spend your time focused on getting to know who IS ready to say yes.

While it’s ideal to have your prospect ask YOU, “How can I help?” or “What else do you need?” they can only do that when you spend time with them.

How to Give an Exceptional Curtain Message

I love live theater. Supporting arts organizations is a joyful passion. Communication is also a passion of mine. Clear, bold communication is what I teach.

Whether you realize it or not, your organization gives “live performances” every day: Board meetings, annual meetings, committee meetings, volunteer gatherings, donor gatherings, attendees at special events, OR you are an arts organization with patrons.

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